Saturday, September 27, 2014

Cleaning & Clearing

     I have been on a massive cleaning & clearing effort at our house for the last couple of weeks. I've had the luxury of the time to spend parts of a day or two on each room, thoroughly cleaning it and getting rid of lots of stuff.
     If you've read my blog for some time, or know me, you know that I despise cleaning. The goofiest things have kept me motivated:
     - a piece of synthetic "lamb's wool" that a friend gave me, saying, "Here, this will clean your window screens." I gave him a look that said, "What makes you think I want to clean my screens?" I took it anyway, decided to try it, and it's a miracle!
     - I bought Howard's Restor-a-Finish at the hardware store to spiff up our oak kitchen cabinets, and that, too, is a miracle product. It cleans and restores the finish without much effort. The cabinets look like new.
     - I had printed an article I saw on Facebook that included a list titled "101 Things That Can Easily Be Reduced in Your Home." My mission is to cross off at least 90, and I'm over half-way to that goal already.
     - The pile of stuff I plan to donate is growing in our garage. There's nothing there I will miss.
     - I've sold some things on craiglist or ebay, thus earning somewhat of a "tip" for my efforts.
     - It feels SO GOOD to de-clutter. I LOVE how seeing some empty spaces.
     - I'm up to 18 bags of trash pitched, plus a bunch of stuff to recycle.

     I heard someone say recently regarding happiness: 1) I got to eat today; 2) I'm healthy; 3) I have someone to love and love me; why wouldn't I be happy?  It makes me happy to have less stuff in my life, and make more room for experiences, like travel, events with friends, golfing and so on.
     Here's to less stuff!

P.S. Before and after photos of the laundry room...

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Useful Thinking

From Paramahansa Yogananda (who wrote Autobiography of a Yogi):
     "Negation acts like an insulator that inhibits the flow of God's power through you and thus causes inharmonies of body, mind, and soul. Criticism, anger, envy, suspicion, jealousy, fear, hate, doubt, laziness, worry, anxiety, thoughts of lack and so on are all forms of negation. Watch your thoughts. Stop them from pointless wandering, and make them obey you. Train your mind to think constructively at all times. A joyful, thankful attitude will carry you a long way toward the goal of bringing into your life only the good things that you desire."
     "Change your thoughts if you wish to change your conditions. Since you alone are responsible for your thoughts, only you can change them."

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Making a Difference

     This quote is from Jane Goodall: What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.
     What kind of difference will you make today? Will you offer a friendly smile or a frown? Will you talk about what's great in your life or talk about problems and what's wrong with the world? Even these seemingly small choices DO make a difference, not only in how you feel, but how those around you are affected.
     We don't have to be Mother Teresa to make a difference. We do it by doing what comes naturally for us. Sometimes it's SO natural, it doesn't seem to make a difference. Here's an example from my life. I'm a natural organizer, especially of events. Last Sunday I organized a trip to Kansas City for three friends and myself. We went to a morning service, lunch with several friends, and then to the Royals game, in a rented car no less. We had a great day! While I dearly love the friends that went with me, I know that if any of them had had to organize the adventure, it would not have happened. That sort of effort just doesn't "float their boats." So my willingness to organize made a great difference, and it was easy for me.
      Consider your choices for making a difference. Go do it!

Monday, September 15, 2014

How about this one?!?!?

In my daily reading today, I ran headlong into this provocative quote by Andrea de Michaelis:

I want to look back on my life and be giddy with joy that I was the one who got to live it. 

This IS possible. I sure do feel this way about my life. Do you?      

Friday, September 12, 2014


     I had a gathering last night of folks that I dearly love, who have been in assorted classes or groups with me. It's a sacred group that loves, listens, supports and delights in one another.
     There you have it. I used the word "sacred." That was our discussion topic. Here's a shortened version of our discussion questions for consideration:

1. What is sacred to you? 
2. Most likely in #1, you identified relatively positive things, such as “family.” Now take a look at those sacred beliefs you hold that may not be serving your best interests. (An example from Leta’s life: I have to do everything myself.)
3. Are you, as a human being, sacred? If you believe you are, how does that lead you to care for yourself? If you don’t believe you are sacred, how does that lead you to care for yourself? How DO you care for yourself? What does this say about your personal sacredness?
4. Is your work sacred? How would your daily worklife change if you viewed it as sacred? (Note “daily worklife” can be paid work, domestic goddess/god tasks, volunteer efforts, retirement/relaxation, etc.)

     By the end of our two-hour gathering, I was in a state of awe at the unique sacredness of each person present. I realized for myself an intimate connection between sacredness and beauty, and beauty is wherever I choose to see it. I certainly see it in other humans and myself. What a blessing!
     Have a great weekend, sacred ones!


Thursday, September 4, 2014

More travels, more lessons

     Fellow practitioner Judy Whitcraft posted this on Facebook:
Abraham wisdom : When a lady asked, "How do I know when to be a teacher to my 19 year old daughter and when to be quiet?" Abraham's answer was......."If you're not sure.... err in minding your own business."

     Oh, geez. I think this is the most challenging thing I get to practice as a parent of adult children. We RAISED them to be independent, and now they are, darn it! (Not really, darn it.) 
     Dennis (my husband) and I went to Fort Collins, Colorado this past long weekend to help our sons move to a new rental home, a huge upgrade for them in terms of space and quality. I had all sorts of motherly wisdom and advice to offer, but blessings of the Universe--the time never seemed just right. And that's for a very good reason! None of what I wanted to say needed to be said. 
     I am an avid supporter of free will and free choice--it's our most fundamental human endowment. So if I want to have free choice and learn the way I learn, I must allow my wonderful sons to do the same. We learn much more by experience than we ever learn by being told what to do. 
     Practicing life, learning lessons,